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tv   Asia Insight  PBS  September 16, 2015 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT

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♪ ♪ >> dan ong, vietnam. the city is located directly between the capital of hanoi is
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the economic metropolis of ho chi minh. in the past it flourished as a trading base between the east and west. and it's also known as the major tourist attraction for the ancient capital of the guian dynasty. in 2013 and 2014, the vietnamese chamber of commerce selected da nang as the country's most industrially competitive city. ♪ last year the amount of cargo handled in the city's port totalled 5.5 million tons, double that of five years ago. the number of trucks in the city has also surged, causing traffic jams in the morning and evening rush hours. ♪ over 300 foreign affiliated firms now have offices here. the increase in jobs has attracted laborers from nearby villages. helping to boost da nang's
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booming population. this dramatic transformation was triggered by the construction of the east-west coast economic corridor, a road that cuts through southeast asia from vietnam, laos, and thailand on myanmar. it's impacted distribution in the region. what used to be shipped can now be delivered by truck, reducing delivery time by 14 days. development is progressing rapidly ahead of the founding of the economic community. [ speaking foreign language ]
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♪ >> in this episode of "asia insight," we take a look at dwept in da nang, meeting with business people hoping to benefit from the opening of the east-west coast economic corridor. >> the redevelopment of da nang has been under way since 1998. when the east-west economic
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corridor was launched. and particular focus has been placed on the modernization of the port system. tien sa, the main terminal, has a 12 meter deep area which enables these cargo ships to dock. it was originally built during the vietnam war for american military vessels. although it was severely out of repair, it can now handle five times more containers than before, thanks to an extensive makeover. a further round of construction commencing at the end of 2015 is expected to double the size of the port. once completed, it will cater
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for even larger vessels. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> currently some 10,000 trucks drive through tien sa every month, including those from other countries. this diner close to the entrance has been in business for many years. round the clock, it is packed with drivers and port workers. [ speaking foreign language ]
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♪ >> it is the distribution business that has been prospering the most under da nang's redevelopment. previously there were only state-run companies, but with the introduction of a market economy, there are now 25 distribution firms. ♪ ♪ the formally state-run leads the city's distribution industry. at one point the container shipping company faced bankruptcy, but it now handles around 30% of tien sa's cargo.
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[ speaking foreign language ] ♪ mother of two, hoang thi ha was responsible for getting the company back on track. she currently manages about 80 drivers. the market economy was introduced in vietnam in 1986. in 2000, da nang was privatized [ speaking foreign language ]
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♪ >> at the time she was appointed to lead the company, there were few factories in central vietnam and construction at tien sa had only just begun. but with the state-run mentality running strong in the corporate culture, the company was losing out to rivals. she personally knocked on the doors of many clients. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> since their reboot in the private sector, sales have surged by more than 20% each year, and the workforce has increased three-fold. ha is planning to expand her company's business in preparation for the competition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪icompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪incompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪ecompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪vcompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪icompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪tcompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪acompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪bcompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪lecompetition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪competition with foreign affiliated firms. ♪ ♪ tien sa is separated from the center of the city by a river perfect there used to be just two bridges, but now there are five within a six-kilometer area. both the landscape and the lives of local residents have changed dramatically in recent years. economic growth, which averages around 5% in vietnam, has risen
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to 9.2% in da nang. the gdp per capital in the city has also surpassed the national average by $600. ♪ in addition to the revamping of the port, the government has also been working to attract foreign investment. six industrial zones have been built along the road stretching from da nang port to the laotian border. the hoa kind industrial zone is the largest. this 395 hectare plot of land is home to 167 firms from seven countries. incentives, including deductions on corporate income taxes and special rates on land leases are
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tailor-made to suit each individual company. nitto opened an office here four years ago at the foothold for a japanese company's expansion into southeast asia. the company manufactures water tanks, purifying tanks, and temporary toilets, using fiberglass reinforced plastic. it also imports materials from taiwan and south korea. and manufactures products in vietnam, where labor is cheaper. although the company mainly sells domestically, it's planning to export to laos and thailand. when this local subsidiary was established, general director taiyo abe was put in charge of selecting the location, scale,
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and business plan. [ speaking >> of the roughly 70 factory workers, some 90% are in their 20s.
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many are from neighboring farming villages. vo tan hanh came to da nang from one such village months ago. although he attended college, he couldn't find a job in his hometown. [ speaking foreign language ] >> hanh majored in electronic engineering at university. his parents noticed his potential and took out loans to pay for his education. but in vietnam, around 60% of
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college grads cannot land an ideal position. demand in the job market is mainly for factory workers. he works for eight hours, starting at 7:30 a.m., and makes about $190 u.s. a month. after work, he heads to a diner near his apartment. ♪ now that he's become friends with the staff, he can relax here. he always orders the 70 cent bowl of noodles. he tries to cut costs so he can save money to work overseas in the future. [ speaking foreign language ]
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♪ >> hanh is the third son in a family of five children, but he's the only one who attended college. that's why he wants to work overseas, to reimburse his parents. this is hanh's apartment. rent is $38 u.s. a month, including utilities. his 20 square-meter room comes with a bathroom and a small sink in the back.
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hanh has spent nothing on furnishing his room. his television and an electric fan he has were given to him by his parents when he left home. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> after witnessing growth in da nang, hanh is optimistic about the future.
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this is an employment office in the city. the number of job openings has reportedly doubled in the past three years. but most are for manual labor that offer the city's minimum wage of around $140 u.s. a month. there are few jobs that appeal to college graduates. in order to build an industry that can successfully compete with foreign markets, the city is preparing for the next decade. the da nang department of foreign affairs is in charge of planning to attract foreign capital. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> i.t. firms are being offered special incentives, such as no corporate taxes for four years, and no payments for land leases for 11 years. ♪ ♪ students studying i.t. can
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receive low interest student loans. this has increased the number of students enrolling from distant areas. ♪ >> yeah, i'm from another province, it's about 400 kilometers from here. i think this is invaluable potential for economic growth. and i think in the future da nang will be the most desirable city to live in vietnam. >> i have a long-term plan to be a project manager, and then a ceo or something like that.
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>> i want to be a developer and i want to be a ceo. >> if da nang's plan to attract i.t. firms succeeds, it will create 40,000 jobs ideal for educated youngsters. this is da nang's international bus station. the number of buses leaving for laos has increased to five a day since the east-west economic corridor was opened. every day about 100 passengers
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gather at the station. some are heading to laos on holiday, but most are going for business. ♪ ♪ [ speaking foreign language ] >> the route from da nang to the laotian border is roughly 300 kilometers. before the road was improved, it used to take nine hours. now it takes only five.
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in addition, since january 2015, border customs procedures have become much more simple. the advancement of da nang depends heavily the east-west economic corridor, which is mobilizing both laborers and goods. in early april, the large purifying tank for which hanh is partially responsible was completed. everyone has been working hard since early morning to dispatch the tank. this marks the tenth unit that the company has made since its founding. general director abe makes time to mark this landmark with his
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employees. [ speaking foreign language ] >> some day this company's products may become common household items in southeast asia. meanwhile, ha is in action on site. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> with the loss of the economic community in december of this year, there will be freer flow of trade and movement of goods. this heralds a new beginning for the region and da nang may become one of the most important players in a transformed southeast asia. ♪ ♪
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welcome to "newsline." i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. we start with the tsunami warning system says magnitude 8.3 earthquake has occurred near the coast of central chile and the quake struck at around 2254 utc on wednesday and says the focus was ten kilometers deep. call frg caution against possible tsunami. it says tsunami waves reaching more than three meters above tide level are possible along some coasts of chile. it also says waves


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